Become a SUPERHOST and avoid Host Fatigue

Airbnb Host Fatigue
Airbnb Host Fatigue

 

Become a SUPERHOST and avoid Host Fatigue

In recent times property owners on Airbnb have become successful micro-entrepreneurs who now live a lifestyle filled with diverse experiences. These successful group of people will  attest to the fact that one of the key traits required is to be a genuine and warm host. Great hosting takes a lot of work, time and dedication on the part of the property owner and this is certainly not easy to be consistent with; considering our busy lifestyles where we are constantly juggling various aspects of our personal and professional commitments.

And so the downside? Off Lately one is seeing property owners experiencing ‘host fatigue’, that feeling of ‘burnt out’ which then leads to a domino effect on the guest stay and guest experience scenarios.

We as human beings are hardwired to start off any new venture with great enthusiasm- and on Airbnb there are property owners who totally dedicate themselves to their guests so much so that everything else in their lives then takes sort of a ‘back seat’ which is anything but healthy in any shape or form because at some point it all seems like a huge chore.

What exactly is Host Fatigue?

Most property owners give it their all when it comes to pleasing the guest which is great but sometimes this creates an imbalance and some common examples are:-

  • waking up at odd hours in the morning to check the Airbnb mobile app
  • running to get repair jobs done on time before the next guest comes in
  • feeling inadequate with the quality of images of one’s property put up on the Airbnb profile
  • pulling your hair just because the right ‘check in manual’ wasn’t given to the guest
  • feeling unsure about the amenities offered in the flat
  • dreaming about clean linens and laundry instead of a peaceful night’s sleep etc.

And yes the initial lure of back- to-back bookings have eventually fazed many a Host as that leads to minor slip-ups which then lead to Host Fatigue as one then starts to get ‘negative reviews’.

Life is not about juggling but actually about striking a ‘balance’ with it all.

How to avoid Host Fatigue

What helps us is facing up reality and having realistic expectations from our own selves. This then means that when it comes to Hosting we must understand that we can only do so much and to truly be consistent with it we must allow ourselves to collaborate with a professional team/host management agency who know their job and have the experience to back it up with.

One such is ‘Hello Guest’ who offer their professional services to the Property owners thus ensuring that you- the property owner need not stress, worry, juggle, and thus give in to host fatigue anymore.

Hello Guest’s Mantra is simple- Streamlining approach- maximise performance and minimise cost.

With our very dedicated team of professionals we ensure that each and every area of Property management and Guest management is well covered. With Veronica and Toby at the helm of it all- the team is constantly motivated to deliver the highest standards worthy of any luxury hotel yet keeping in tune with realistic expectations of the Host as well as the Guest. Hello Guest has had consistent performance parameters along with establishing healthy trusting relationships with the property owners.

So let us wear that Hat- allow us to partner with you- let us focus on guest screenings, bookings and the logistics of it all; whilst you focus on your relationship with life. Reach us at helloguest.co.uk.

Free up your free time- go meditate on the beach, play golf and stay Fatigue-free!

 

How much can you make from Airbnb in London?

How much can you make from Airbnb in London?

Short-term rentals and lettings have dramatically increased  and with this the potential to earn more ever since Airbnb has become a way of living from the time of its inception in 2008.

From Property owners to entrepreneurs, and everyone in the middle has enthusiastically taken to this entirely new style of doing business- the sharing economy as it’s aptly called.

London is the No.1 (main video link here) most visited city in the world since the past 3 years and has the 3rd highest occupancy rate with Airbnb with one of the lowest seasonal volatility- which means London is 365 year round- and your potential to earn becomes far better in such a scenario.

How much can you truly earn?

The average rates around Central London looks like this

Airbnb in London
Central London Airbnb prices

What exactly is Airbnb and how does anyone make money out of this is the most commonly asked question?

It’s a digital platform that allows anyone and everyone (mostly ordinary people like us) to rent out our property or our rooms (depending on the space available) to travellers and tourists visiting our cities no matter where we are in the world. And we get to charge them for their short-term stays.

All you have to do is create a profile on Airbnb with loads of great but real pictures of the property/space you intend letting out, do some research on the kind of pricing in your area- and accordingly fix a price to your abode.

Airbnb takes care of the payment aspects- the paperwork, the bookings and what’s more- you get a great insurance deal (up to £600,00 or $1 million) 

What are the top 3 reasons to Airbnb your home?

We could list a ‘host’ of reasons- pun intended.

But the top 3 we figure easily makes the most common sense.

Ease and Flexibility is number 1– where else are you (the property owner) going to have it this easy to make regular and decent earnings without any major risks involved? You can choose the time, the month, the frequency of how often you wish to rent your space out and then have it back whenever you want.

More Money better lifestyle!- We could have easily listed this as no.1 but then it’s not all about the money is it? It’s all about a lifestyle- and the ease with which you can truly have it. So if you wish to travel for a few months, or take that course in Spain, or just soak in some culture in Asia- and yet make money on your property- which pays the mortgage, the bills, covers your travels and yet manage to save over- how cool is that! Would you or not?

Hassle Free- In a truly connected global economy what we all wish for more and more is less stress on doing things- or doing business even. With Hello Guest- we manage your listings and look at every other aspect whilst you go off and say Hello to the World.

So really what is needed?

It can be as basic as a spare room, a studio flat, or something adventurous like a houseboat, a caravan on wheels or opulent like a 75 bedroom castle, or cool digs with a city penthouse or loft overlooking the lights.

But having said this- there are some key factors that will make your property much more appealing to any guest looking to stay over.

As we very well know that ‘experience’ is what counts- and anyone having a great experience is not only sure to come back but also spread the word.

How one manages ‘listings and great guest experiences’ is key here. And guest experience is nothing but how well-managed it all is. From the time the guest checks in until check out- fresh linens, clean house, well-stocked bathroom, kitchen amenities, a welcome goody bag, information manual all make a huge difference in experience.

And with a few very professional and world-class property management outfits available with Airbnb- your job is even simpler- as all you have to do is partner with the right kind of company that genuinely cares for you, your property, the guest experience and your earnings.

The other key factor is ‘What kind of property you have’?

Does it have a great view? Is it conveniently located with easy access to public transport? What’s the quality of the building etc etc.

Let’s talk about London here since we are primarily focused on this city.

We have seen over time that most travellers prefer to book a place that is in Zone 1 or Zone 2 and a few selected areas outside these zones; but prime Central London is truly where the action and the buzz is for tourists.

You can tap in the postcode, area code or location into Airbnb’s search facility and you’ll quickly get a sense of what properties go for in your area.

So what are you waiting for? Get in touch with us here, and go take that dream vacation leaving the Airbnb hassles to us.

Professional management for your AirBnB account

Professional Property Management

It was not too long ago when property owners in London would have to go through a Rental management agency or a broker to make a deal for renting their properties out.
But times have changed and AirBnB has revolutionized the business.
Now every property owner is turning into a rentalpreneur or a microentreprenuer in the current sharing economy that has taken the global world by storm and rightly so. In fact there are individuals who are specifically buying properties just to let out on AirBnB.
No more the encumbrances that usually were part of the previous way of doing business — its more about the freedom to be able to choose how short/long a stay the host wants to give out the property for and thus be able to completely maximise on rent incomes in various flexible ways. Also it’s important to remember that with short lettings the owner can use the property as and when needed.

Also AirBnB’s jaw dropping $24billion valuation in June 2015 with revenues between $850-900 million has made everyone the world over sit up, take notice and also wanting to be a part of this success story. Airbnb was founded in 2007 and has become the brand of choice for Lifestyle Business Entrepreneurs who travel extensively and want the personal touch rather than the sterile environment of hotels.
So AirBnB has fast grown in popularity across all kinds of travellers, as there is room for everyone on it.
And even the hosts get to benefit in ways beyond just the actual income- they get to meet people of varied cultures and share experiences which sometimes also lead to great friendships and relationships.

But this way of doing business in the property domain does not come without its pitfalls.
The crucial factor for many hosts/property owners is the fact — Is my Home truly protected or taken care off not just with the guest screenings but key services that make all the difference- fresh laundry, impeccable cleanliness, protection against theft and damage etc..
And to top it with a service where the guest feels completely at home and the property owner feels at peace knowing that the property is being taken care off before and after the guests depart.
What is imperative here is the ‘Trust Factor’. Of being able to trust the management services that the property owners sign on to take care of all of the above.
Let’s take a look at what are the essential key services that a property owner/rentalpreneur will look for in a management service outfit.
Dynamic Pricing
Showcasing the property via professionally shot images etc (This requires a certain skill in being able to shoot alluring images of the property to be listed)
Guest Approvals & Communication
Meet and Greet Guests + Passing the Key
Housekeeping + Laundry + Fresh Linen
Property maintenance and co-ordination

In recent times there has been a spate of various management companies that have all come up to get their share of the pie that is AirBnB. But the question is how many can deliver and do deliver upon their promises.

What is crucial here for the rentalpreneur/property owner to ask of/understand from a management service before taking them on-
‘Are they here to build a long-term relationship with me or are they in it only for the short-term gain?’

‘Can I trust them even if I live in another city/country?’
‘Am I assured of security and safety of my home and its valuables etc?’
‘Will I get 5-star ratings for my property if I engage with this management services company?’
‘Does the team share the same philosophy?’

These are all crucial questions that you as a Rentalpreneur must ask prior to getting anyone onboard.
Most management services in the AirBnB domain are impersonal and are genuinely not caring enough to go that extra mile and this for most property owners can be a make/break deal.

We at Hello Guest constantly keep endeavouring to ensure that our property owners not just get to know us face2face but also understand us and our operations at every step of the way.
Transparency is the key to build long-term relationships that are mutually beneficial to the property owner and the management team.
At Hello Guest we reinforce flexibility and true partnership with property owners by not getting into any fixed length timeline in the contract. This means that both are happy to continue developing this relationship or leave it if the client for any reason is not satisfied with our services.

So for your peace of mind whilst you sit back and let us maximize on your property why not get in touch with us and see how we can be your partners in business. To contact us click here.

Hello! The guest is calling this summer…

Let Out Your Home

Hello! The guest is calling this summer..

In the light of the recently introduced ‘tax break’ by the UK Government/UK Chancellor George Osborne on March 16th 201, micro-entrepreneurism in the Airbnb domain is now in full swing. This allowance in essence means Airbnb hosts in the UK will now be able to earn 1000£ tax free which means more income for the cash strapped citizens who own homes that have the potential to be let out.

This is a major step up from the earlier ruling in March 2015 that allowed Londoners looking to rent their homes to freely do so for upto 90 nights a year without council permission.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/boost-for-londoners-as-red-tape-slashed-on-short-term-lets

Also the government has come up to speed by allowing for ‘no forms’ to fill policy and no tax to pay in sync with the digital age. The property owner is now fast becoming a business owner and like any business it needs to be taken care of- before it is being advertised as a potential holiday pad for any visitor.

This then is the ‘sign of the times’ we are now living in. The much talked about ‘sharing economy’, which analysts estimate to be currently worth £9bn globally and rising. It is all about a digital connection.

SO then how do we at Hello Guest perceive this connection — What does it mean?

As people travel more frequently, there is far more connectivity thanks to the varied Digital platforms that keep innovating and showing us on how we can do it all better.

But for us its not just about being better. It’s more than that.

For us at Hello Guest it’s about true connections and relationships. The way we see it The Digital Connection has only become popular because of the power of collaborative economy. This economy that is fast gaining a strong foothold has in turn greatly increased the desire in people to travel far and wide and connect beyond the digital but ironically via their digital connections.

These travels are also all about how you stay, where you stay and why you stay. Which means the vibe that a traveller or a guest will feel when he/she see a home that is being advertised online for a short break is what will clinch the decision.

That means you as a property owner is not an impersonal owner anymore. Your home now is subject to scrutiny from the world outside. At the same time by going out on their own, most property owners suffer from the ‘wrong kind of guest’ who invades your space and by the time he has left, the space has been turned upside down.

You certainly don’t want that! But no need to get fazed as most property owners flounder in the AirBnB space on how to go about it.

Specially if you have put in love and care and yes money into making your home for what it is, all the more reason that you engage professional services to be able to discern the kind of guest who will appreciate that.

We are the bridge that connects…with our experience in knowing people.

We firmly believe in a proper meet and greet with the property owner and understand what exactly are you looking for, the kind of income, the kind of guest etc.

We at Hello Guest know what it takes to collaborate and yet build solid trust and connections with our property owners and our guests. The Summer of 2016 already seems to be heating up with a plethora of new and old players in the domain all vying for a piece of the action. The key factor that ultimately decides on who gets the most is not a game of chance but rather a setting of professional service with a willingness to extend beyond just the standard services outlined by this domain.

It’s about going deeper and exploring, figuring the right match- its about playing cupid for the intrepid traveller and the property owner.

This is exactly what sets us apart at HelloGuest- It is not just the promise of a well-deserved short stay/intimate break that we advertise but the promise of a home away from home, where your needs are taken care of to the minutest details and all you have to do is turn the key to your London break.

A city that is one of the most exciting and only gets cooler as the temperatures soar up. So if you are planning a visit this Summer to beautiful and sexy London or if you are a property owner turned entrepreneur in this rental space- Hello Guest is calling!

Reach out to us at helloguest.co.uk/contact-us/

Airbnb pricing – How to set the best price & maximise your rental income on sites like Airbnb

Price setting is one of the trickiest areas for hosts to decide and one of the most commonly asked questions – is the price too high? is it too low? what’s the right price level?

Its also one of the most important factors to consider to get the most from your rental income so its worth taking the time to review it. Once you have added your listing, taken super photos and created a fantastic profile then pricing becomes one of the most important considerations guests will be making in choosing your place.

Although there is no perfect price level this article includes some tips and ideas on how to optimise your pricing & maximise your rental income:

  1. Competitive context — make a comparison of similar properties in your area and the prices they are asking. Firstly check other properties advertised on the same site as travellers will typically compare a few places before deciding, so this will be your direct competition and should provide you with the most relevant price range. If there are not enough comparable places on the site you are advertising on then do a wider search to include other sites or alternative accommodation options such as hotels, bed & breakfasts, hostels, etc.
  2. Occupancy rates & rental yields — if you are starting out its better to start with a lower rental price to get some bookings and build up some positive reviews. Once you have been renting for a while if you have no problem renting out your place most of the time then its worth testing if a small increase in pricing has any impact on your occupancy rate and visa versa if a decrease in rent will increase your occupancy rate. The goal is to find the right balance between the occupancy rate & rental yield to optimise your rental income.
  3. Seasonality & Special Events — on average summer bookings to London are 15% higher in the summer than during the winter period in addition to several seasonal peaks in demand, for example during Xmas, Easter, School Holidays & Bank Holiday weekends. There may also be special events in your area such as concerts, shows, matches, exhibitions, etc where it could be worth adjusting your pricing depending on the level of demand. Airbnb offers the option to add weekend pricing and manage different pricing levels in advance through the calendar.
  4. Availability — if there are only a few places available in your area and they are fully booked then you could reasonably increase pricing due to the shortages in availability. Managing variable pricing on this level is a bit more time consuming but could be worth it as a simple way to boost your rental income.
  5. Add a cleaning fee to your bookings — this Airbnb option is often overlooked but cleaning is one of the most time consuming or if you use a cleaning service costly elements for each booking, it’s becoming increasingly common and reasonable to add a cleaning fee.
  6. Additional guest fee — there is a feature on Airbnb that allows you to add an additional guest fee, so if you have the possibility to add additional sleeping arrangements even if a room or place is normally only large enough for a certain number of guests, this could be very useful for guests that don’t mind sharing the space or have an additional person staying for only part of the period.
  7. Review and adjust your pricing regularly — periodically review your pricing as competitor prices regularly change, the number & type of places available in your area change in addition to the reasons given above such as seasonality & availability.

Price setting can significantly improve your rental income if you are able to actively manage it. As part of our Airbnb management service London we will optimise your pricing and occupancy rates, we also offer individual as well full property management services with no hidden fees or contract commitment required — if you are interested in finding out more about our services then don’t hesitate to contact us (email: hello@helloguest.co.uk) or visit our website (helloguest.co.uk)

Please comment if you found this article useful or have some additional thoughts that could help hosts with pricing.

Should I rent my property on sites like Airbnb?

Short stay rental sites such as Airbnb, Housetrip, Wimdu & others offer travellers an alternative to staying in hotels. They are online market places connecting private landlords with people looking for a place to stay typically for short periods or weekend visits. This includes a wide range of places to stay from just a room, studio, apartment or even a entire house. But this isn’t exclusively for tourists as many regular business travellers have also been attracted by the benefits over staying in hotels.

So what are the advantages for travellers vs hotels?

  • Much more space for less money, typically you can get an apartment for the same price as a hotel room
  • Staying in a place with more character & personality than the impersonal ‘vanilla’ hotel experience
  • Having access to amenities such as a kitchen so you don’t have to eat out all the time
  • Meeting local people and getting local tips on what’s on & where to go

And what are the advantages for those renting?

  • Flexibility when to let out your place or not if you need to stay there for a while
  • Higher potential rental income vs longer term flat rental or a way to earn extra money if you are renting just a room or part of your property
  • Great chance to meet people from around the world, open your home and share experiences

Since Airbnb launched in 2008 there has already been a huge increase in the number of places on offer with currently over 25000 places in Britain. It has become an established alternative to hotels with more and more people using this option, demand is growing.

So what are the main issues with listing on sites like Airbnb?

  1. Once you have listed your property it takes some time and effort to manage the listing, the main on-going activities include guest communication, screening & booking, cleaning/preparing the place for the next guest, check-in & check-out, property maintenance & admin.
  2. Part of the above ongoing activities but worth highlighting is the importance of guest screening to avoid problems. Airbnb gives guests and hosts the chance to review each other providing a helpful safeguard for both sides.
  3. Even though the overwhelming number of experiences have been positive there have been some bad experiences with guests damaging things. As a result Airbnb has put in place some insurance cover under their Host Guarantee up to £600000 but some things are not covered. Also not all sites offer this and it’s worth checking your home insurance for additional cover. Finally you can ask that guests give a deposit to cover against minor issues.
  4. There may be some legal aspects to consider especially if you are renting your place and intend to sublet, you would need to check your lease or rental agreement. You may also need to take care of tax payments especially if you are generating a significant income from rental.

Overall we would recommend giving Airbnb a go as a great way to earn some extra cash and still have the flexibility to use your space when you need it. If you are letting out your place or thinking about it but want some help managing it we can provide either individual or a full property Airbnb management service London — don’t hesitate to contact us (email: hello@helloguest.co.uk) or visit our website (helloguest.co.uk)